Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


The religious group that I have chosen for this blog post is the Lutheran Christian faith.
My reason for choosing this specifically is partially because of a friend living in America who accepts it as their belief, which has encouraged my curiosity to understand more about it, how it differs from other forms of the christian belief, and of its place in American society.
Here I will provide a brief background on how it came into being:
. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America was formed over 20 years ago, and is the result of the formation of three seperate church bodies, namely The American Lutheran Church, The Association of Evangelical Lutheran Churches and The Lutheran Church in America.
.The chosen combination was the result of shared beliefs and "missions" between the three churches.
.The website claims that the church is now compromised of 4.8 million members.
.Founded by the German priest Martin Luther.

Reading through the ELCA Social Messages tab, it reveals how many topics of debate - including the death penalty and Euthenasia, are viewed by this religion and how they do not appear to deny, but instead confront them much more sensitively and even attempt to look differently at the issues that surround the topics.
Whilst I am not extremely familiar with various religious outlooks and practices, ELCA comes across as a very world-wise website that very much focuses on aiding the wider community and encourages its followers to support others living in different nations as well as their own in their time of need, as exampled in the segment located on the front page of the website which has a feature titled "Japan Response". It also appears to function as a communicative tool to create awareness of poverty and disease, such as the advertisement for World Malaria Day also on the front page. In this sense, it may also act as a news source for how Lutherans could be contributing to the wellbeing of others.
To me this portrays American identity to be compassionate and supporting, whilst at the same time very modest and open-minded in keeping with the incentive to "Love thy neighbour".

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